Stephen Moore and Alfredo Ortiz write in RealClear Politics that the two successive interest rate increases imposed by the Federal Reserve threaten to stifle the huge financial gains of the last two years:
With the stock market falling another eight percent in the wake of the Federal Reserve’s decision to raise interest rates earlier this month, it’s now clear that the biggest threat to the Trump economic boom is the Fed itself.
At a time of strong growth, wage gains, and record low unemployment, Fed policies have created one of the most dangerous deflation cycles in decades. Falling prices — which we are seeing now in farm products, oil, silver, copper, iron, and so on — can be as destructive to growth as inflation was in the 1970s. The job of the Fed is to keep prices stable, yet this year prices of all commodities are down 12 percent — with most of that decline following the two disastrous rate increases, first in September and then another one a week before Christmas.
The jury has rendered its verdict with a massive stock sell-off. This is what in sports is called an “unforced error.” Americans have lost well over $4 trillion in wealth — almost 1,000 times more than the crook Bernie Madoff ran off with through his criminal schemes. A very strong real economy was created by President Trump’s tax and deregulation policies, which are running at cross purposes with Fed Chairman Jerome Powell’s anti-growth monetary policy. The Fed wrongly believes that growth and wages need to grow more slowly to prevent “overheating.” This is just a fancy way of saying that the Fed is intentionally trying to reduce America’s pace of wage gains and prosperity.
You can read the rest of this editorial here.